Deadline Detroit | Dr. Joel Kahn: What we eat and drink affects brain health; see how to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s

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Twice a month, health columns are written by a practicing cardiologist, clinical professor at Wayne State University School of Medicine and founder of the Kahn Center for Cardiac Longevity at Bingham Farms. He is an author and has appeared on national television, including “Dr. Oz” and “The Doctors Show.”


By Joel Kahn

March is Nutrition Month, an opportune time to note that optimizing brain health with nutrition, supplements, and lifestyle is critical to our success.

Our brain weighs about three pounds, but receives about 20% of the blood flow and nutrients supplied through the circulatory system to the entire body.

Add these six prevention-focused practices to your life to minimize the risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease and other brain disorders:


Follow a Mediterranean diet

Everything we eat and drink affects our brain health. The Mediterranean diet significantly reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia. This plant-based diet focuses on vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lean proteins, and herbs every day. Healthy fats such as olive oil, nuts, legumes and seafood are on the agenda.


Fruits, vegetables and seeds are elements of the Mediterranean diet. (Photo: University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine)

Cutting out most or all meats (processed meats like bacon, pepperoni, and hot dogs are the riskiest), fried foods, fast foods, sugary drinks, and treats like ice cream are some plan.


Incorporate antioxidants

The antioxidants in fruits and vegetables are crucial for preventing Alzheimer’s disease and fighting cell damage. The best antioxidants are vitamin C (red berries and lemons), vitamin E (dark colored seeds and fruits), carotenoids (spinach and broccoli), flavonoids (blueberries and dark chocolate) and selenium (fish and walnuts). Brazil).

Vitamin D from the sun, absorbed through the skin, is also considered part of this group. Nutrition experts recommend eating fruits and vegetables in a rainbow of colors, with the bolder colors being the best for fighting disease and preventing long-term cell damage.


Protect vascular health

Part of preventing Alzheimer’s disease is being aware of your blood vessel (vascular) health and treating any risks with the help of your doctor. Quit smoking if you smoke and follow a realistic weight loss program if you are overweight. This means being aware of your blood pressure, cholesterol levels and diabetes.


Move your body

I recommend exercising three to four days a week for 30 minutes at a time. Moderately vigorous aerobic exercise, enough to make you sweat, provides the most significant health benefits in preventing Alzheimer’s disease. Brisk walking, bicycling, dancing, swimming, running, playing tennis, and gardening are great ways to achieve this level of aerobic activity.


Have a sleep routine

A growing body of evidence shows that seven to eight hours of sleep each night is essential for healthy brain function. Taking steps to relax at night and establishing a sleep routine can help. Dimming the lights, turning off electronics, and choosing quieter activities can help get you in a bedtime mood.


Fortify your diet with supplements

Most people don’t get enough brain nutrients in their diets, so taking brain health supplements is recommended. A local entrepreneur brought a brain supplement manufacturer to the area.

Memory Health, a natural formula, contains carotenoids (lutein, zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin), omega-3 (DHA and EPA) and vitamin E to protect the brain from daily stress.

The nutrients in Memory Health have been tested in double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trials. It is the only supplement with a US patent for the prevention and treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. It has been clinically proven to improve cognitive functions, memory, eyesight, concentration, clarity and mood.

You cannot get these ingredients from food alone. Nutrition and the other steps listed here are key to protecting your brain’s future health, but diet alone cannot provide enough of the nutrients the brain needs.

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